Design Thinking LAB: Math Goes Fashion

Konrad Cernohous, Dominik Gross, Petra Ilias, Walter Lunzer, Ruth Mateus-Berr, Jasmin Schaitl and Peter Michael Schultes
Proceedings of Bridges 2011: Mathematics, Music, Art, Architecture, Culture (2011)
Pages 601–604 Short Papers


This paper describes the strategy of approaching math through fashion using interdisciplinary methods such as ``Design Thinking''. A group of designers, artists, physicists and mathematicians from different universities mingle regularly at the Design Thinking Lab at the University of Applied Arts under the supervision of Ruth Mateus-Berr. Now they are approaching fashion through math. In Western Europe, the making of patterns in garments mainly comes from one tradition. As far as we know, no one has yet thought about an approach based on platonic solids or reformulated the traditional S,M,L,XL sizes with a new mathematical interpretation, Body-Index-Cloth. Rotational forms of conic sections enable us to find forms for a hyperbolic ball gown. The Lab covers a broad range of problem domains from pattern making to fashion for buildings with inflatable membranes. Recent experiments reveal new perspectives for fashion and, additionally, bring up educationally fruitful methods for working with mathematical topics using a creative base.